Crime Watch 8

Indiana gets $67 million to help victims of crimes

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Indiana is getting $67 million through the federal Victims of Crime Act to help fund various social services in the state over the next two years.

Devon McDonald, the Indiana Criminal Justice Institute, executive director, said, “The program is designed to help the overall health and wellbeing of crime victims across the state.”

The program started in 1984 and collects the funds that come from fines, fees and restitution paid at the federal level. 12 organizations got more than one million dollars; Indiana Legal Services and the Health and Hospital Corporation of Marion County got over $2 million.

“These funds go to fund positions or programs to help crime victims after something has occurred, to help them get back on their feet, get them moving, help them learn to cope and put them back into as well of a position as they could have been prior to the incident,” McDonald said.

Mcdonald said these dollars do not go directly into victims’ pockets but rather fund services to help them rebuild their lives.

“We can’t forget about the needs of the victims and that’s what these funds go to support,” McDonald said. “Again these funds go to support the services to help the crime victims.”

Prior Victims of Crime Act grants have helped more than 200 thousand Hoosiers.

“These funds go to service anything from domestic violence to sexual assault. It could be a robbery or a battery or we even fund programs such as ‘MAD,’ Mothers Against Drunk Driving, so it could be maybe you are a victim of an impaired driving incident,” McDonald said.

Indiana Criminal Justice Institute said a variety of organizations receive funding because there is not a one size fits all approach to helping victims. A full list of the Indiana recipients can be found here.